Signs Your Body Is Retaining Too Much Water

by Isadora Baum, CHC

If you notice that your body is swelling at times, without a reasonable cause, it can simply be excess fluid due to a change in lifestyle or condition. Detecting the signs that your body is retaining fluid and understanding what can trigger such water weight can help you decrease inflammation and swelling all around. No one likes to feel bloated, so getting to the root of the issue ahead of time can help save you the stress and insecurities.

As a certified health coach, I work with clients on feeling comfortable and confident in their shape, size, and skin. However, when you're retaining excess fluids and holding more water weight than usual, it can make you feel insecure and pudgy, very unlike how you want to feel each day. Holding excess fluid doesn't equate to pounds, so sometimes you might feel larger than you really are simply because of the appearance of the fluid itself on the exterior of the skin. Don't let it rock your confidence. Here are 9 ways to know that your body is holding on to too much water and needs to decrease its inflammatory response. With a few simple tweaks, you'll start to feel back to normal in no time.

1. History Of Disease

According to Elizabeth Ann Shaw, MS, RDN, CLT, over email with Bustle, you can swell from different health conditions. "When I worked in clinical dietetics, I saw a lot of edema (aka fluid retention) in patients who were suffering from an underlying condition which manifested in extreme swelling in the legs, ankles and feet. It's important if you have a history of kidney disease, diabetes or other cardiovascular conditions you work with your physician to discuss the proper diet and medication regimen to prevent fluid retention which can often be very uncomfortable too," Shaw advises.

2. Eating Salty Foods

If you're eating a diet that is high in salt, which can be in hidden places, such as cured meats, packaged soups, breads, and condiments, you'll likely become dehydrated. Dehydration will cause you to hold more water and be inflamed, advises CEO and co-founder of FOODSTAND app, Rachna Govani and have been vetted and supported by Shauna Keeler, NYC-based Chef, and RD, over email with Bustle.

3. History Of Digestive Issues

If you're experiencing digestive issues that pair with the excess fluids and bloating, it could be related to greater stomach troubles, advises Dr. Lisa Ashe, medical director at BeWell Medicine over email with Bustle. These diseases and conditions can include irritable bowel syndrome, poor gut flora, Crohn's, and candida overgrowth.

4. Constipation

According to holistic health coach and personal trainer Jen Bruno at J.B. Fitness & Nutrition, over email with Bustle, if you're having trouble making bowel movements or are experiencing constipation, it could mean that you're retaining too much fluid and can't eliminate toxins.

5. A High Sugar Diet

According to healthy lifestyle coach Liz Traines, over email with Bustle, if you're eating a high sugar diet, which will even include natural sources, such as fresh fruit, you might be holding on to excess fluids. Make sure you exhibit proper portion control, instead.

6. Thyroid Disease

Bruno says that having a thyroid disease, such as hypothyroidism or Hashimoto's, can cause you to retain excess fluid and show signs of bloating, and even weight gain. If you have this disease, try and find ways to tame your bloating and stay hydrated to nix the buildup of toxins.

7. Irritability & Stress

If you're totally cranky and stressed during the day, you're going to produce excess cortisol, which in turn will increase inflammation and water retention in the body, advises running coach and personal trainer Susie Lemmer over email with Bustle. Try and find healthier outlets for managing your stress and irritable mood swings, such as yoga, meditation, or social events.

8. Injuries & Sore Joints

If you're injured or have sore joints and muscles, you're probably going to be showing signs of inflammation, which can lead to excess water weight and a sluggish metabolism. Foam roll regularly to get rid of tightness, and see a doctor for help if you think you might be injured.

9. Chronic Fatigue

If you're super tired all the time, it could mean that your body is under stress and is overworked, which will cause you to hold onto fluids, advises Lemmer. Plus, if you're actually not sleeping, that will increase cortisol levels and slow the metabolism. All of these attributes will make you more bloated.

If you notice any of these symptoms, make some lifestyle changes to fix the problem and decrease the bloating. With a few tweaks, you'll be able to trim down and feel more comfortable in your body.

Images: Pixabay (10)